Shifting Focus

In the past week, a lot as crossed my mind. Mostly, things around my diabetes control and how to regain it. With a full time job, part-time college classes, and just being a mom and wife all thrown into the mix that is my life, diabetes control has been a foreign language. Even the fact of taking a math class this semester (probability and statistics) has made me that much more irritated to even think about adjusting basal rates or carb ratios (hmm, what is the probability that I’ll mess this all up to heck and back? Hang on while I calculate the mean, standard deviations and z-scores and find my table….0.9845 percent. Oh, but hang on while I decide if it is ethically right for me to make my own adjustments considering I’m not the only one affected by changes I make…..{thank you, Ethics class as well}). My mind is a whirlwind of mess between trying to work toward my degree while trying my hardest not to take away time from family, especially my husband and son.

Which brings me to how I’ve handled things over the past few years. I’ve always been a lover of technology. It’s true – I’m curious about almost any new thing on the market and want to try it at least once. I like finding out how different devices work and seeing how they fit into life with diabetes, even though I know that my life with diabetes isn’t the only one out there or isn’t like everyone else’s (read: EVERYONE’S diabetes varies), and reporting to you my deep felt and honest opinions about said devices or products or foods or whatever. I’ve always sort of had both a “let me be the guinea pig” mentality mixed with a “maybe this will be THE dream product/gadget/whatever”. I’ve done my best to make what I have work, even when I knew it was something that caused me stress and irritation when I knew I had something else that worked better and easier. Sort of like in my P&S class when you’re given the option of either working the problem out manually or through your scientific calculator… but I’m the hard-head that chooses to work out the problem manually because I like to see how things work, and yet wants to use the calculator when it comes to the test.

Where am I going with this? This past week has taught me a hard yet quick lesson. In one day, I went from having a mindset of “yeah, I’ll try anything, my diabetes isn’t going away and my control isn’t going to change no matter what I do so let me switch up things randomly in search of the d-gadget holy grail” to “this stuff is not what matters”. When you wake up one morning and you can’t see out of one eye and the doctor tells you it’s because of your diabetes, you tend to take a hard look at how you’ve controlled it in the past and you strive to do better. You look back at the numbers. You look back at the choices you’ve made around dosing and food and all sorts of things.  You look at your family and think, “was my love of d-technology worth not just sticking to one thing and paying attention to how you controlled things, not your technology”?,  “Was trying to save that cartridge with 100u – about $30 – left in it and the 200-300 BG range you dealt with worth it now? and scrounging of insulin – even potentially skunky insulin or a possible bad site? Was the high BG’s and possible damage really worth that $50 or so now??”

It’s hard.

It’s sobering.

What gadgets and devices I use now no longer matters as long as it keeps me between the lines of my target range. What matters is how I choose to manage my diabetes not just with those devices, but also food choices and exercise and everything else. My focus has shifted away from being mostly around my d-tech to being mostly, if not wholly, around my care. Because in the end, it’s not going to be about how frugal I was with supplies or which meter I chose or what pump I chose or what CGM I chose – if any of those at all, but how I used the ones I did choose to the best of my ability to take care of myself.

1 thought on “Shifting Focus”

  1. Let me take a moment and address the “part-time college classes” part. This is a season, things are going to have to be let go. You will lose time with your family, there’s just no way around it. We moved for my husband to go to seminary (very intense master’s degree) with a 3 month old baby. We had 3 more children while there, the last being born on his graduation day – it took 6 years for him to finish. I knew that I would be the only parent available sometimes, b/c he took classes, worked, and studied/wrote papers. But when he was available he was there with the kids. They don’t know it now, all of the time he was gone. We just tried to make the most of the time he was available. We simplified everything. Sometimes the only time we were together was dinner, there was no teaching table manners (besides the basics) or forcing our children to eat new things b/c we didn’t want dinner to be stressful or full of fights. Decide what needs to be let go and the best way to use the time available. Plan little trips for breaks from school or encourage grandparents to take the kid(s). Reduce your stress, I really think stress aggravates my diabetes! 🙂

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